Open Letter to Raven Symoné

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Hey Ms. Symoné, 20-something Black girl here. So, I heard some of your comments and read your apology and—oh snap. It’s great that you’re an equal opportunity employer. We are so relieved to hear that you wouldn’t discriminate someone because of his or her name. For a moment I was worried that you would’ve discriminated against me. My name is normal, but with me being a Black feminist and all, it could’ve made things a bit awkward.

Then again Ms. Symoné, I’m not sure that I want to work for you. After all, you did agree with the people who said our First Lady looked like a monkey. That was disrespectful and uncalled for. Perhaps, you did it to raise ratings on The View. Maybe, you thought the monkey joke would fuel your dying stardom, but it was a cruel and uncalled for joke. These days you keep rambling and spewing antics. It feels like you’re that drunk uncle at Christmas party who keeps touching people inappropriately and spewing racists rants.

We excuse the behavior because drunk uncle doesn’t know any better. Somehow, people were able to forget that you insulted our First Lady, and said that you don’t believe in there being a race. A few people were surprised at your nouveau noir tendencies; however, for the rest of us it was just another Raven day.

Not everyone has to be an advocate for fighting against discrimination. We get it—it’s not your thing. Raven, you might feel that you don’t need to talk about racism because it’s so passé. Plus, you have money and might feel that racism doesn’t affect you anymore. You have the right to keep thinking this way, but not addressing the issues circulating in the Black community is toxic and can reinforce modern day racism. Nowadays, racism is stronger than ever. Racism has moved from the overt to covert. We’re recruiting agents to stop it and if you don’t want to want to be down with the cause, that’s fine. I hear the ratings for The View are dropping.

What To Do After Amber Rose’s Slut Walk

 

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Amber Rose’s Slut Walk is happening on the 3rd. No matter the outcome of the event, it is a step in the right direction to stop gender inequality and slut shaming. The event will be exciting, spectacular, and I can’t wait to see the coverage. Even though it hasn’t happened yet, it’s time to start planning what we will do after the slut walk to continue fighting against gender inequality.

Just because Amber Rose was able to use her star power to get big names behind her walk doesn’t mean that you can’t do the same. Every movement has to start from somewhere. We can’t keep waiting on the stars to initiate all the change. In your sweatpants and messy bun, you can make a difference too.

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Step one: burn all your bras. I’m kidding. They’re too expensive and I’m such a klutz that I would probably end up burning down my apartment. So put the lighter down and let’s keep brainstorming other ways to make difference. Like Amber Rose, you can start using your different social media platforms to express your outrage and start a movement. Call out the people in your life who try to slut shame you or mansplain life. Let people know that you’re fighting for the justice and equality that women have been denied for centuries.

You’re brilliant and powerful and you don’t have to tolerate any form of inequality or discrimination. If you can take a picture of your food and put it on Instagram, then I think that you can post a picture that fights against inequality and sexism. It doesn’t have to be radical. It can be as simple as a hashtag or as beautiful as your face proclaiming that you’re proud to be a woman.

Lessons on Love from Serena, Sanna, and Rihanna

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In the crazy world of Hollywood, cupid has been shooting arrows everywhere. Some of the recent rumored victims of cupid’s touch have been Rihanna, Serena Williams, and Sanna Lathan. They all have been connected to rappers with interesting romantic pasts.

The Internet is up in arms about their relationships. Rihanna’s Navy collectively had a heart attack when news broke that her and Travis Scott were possibly seeing each other. After Serena lost her match, Twitter created #BlameDrake. Then Sanna Lathan revealed that she’s in a relationship with French Montana, and left everyone dazed and confused.

You can’t fight or dodge cupid’s arrows. People have the right to love whoever they want to. However, as a woman they are so many problems that appear when trying to love. First there’s the issue of women loving men who are possibly not worthy of them. Second, if a woman has a slip up and dates or loves a no good. Then she’s reprimanded or reminded for the rest of her life. Meanwhile, a man has the opportunity to skip away scot-free.

It’s a double standard that women have been taught since childhood. Women can’t sleep around with a bunch of men because that means we are morally corrupt. Men are taught to spread their oats and have a good time. The sky is blue, and water is wet. What on earth are us women going to do?

I say that we love whomever we want to. We don’t owe anything to anyone. However, we do owe it to ourselves to be selfish and do whatever we need to do to protect our hearts and our beautiful minds. Sometimes, protecting ourselves means saying no to a potential partner, and staying in the single lane.

Cupid is sneaky and loving someone isn’t as simple as telling your third grade crush to check yes or no. Everyone handles love and intimacy differently. How do you handle love? Do you try to stop yourself from liking potential no goods? Or do you believe in letting the good times roll and not worrying about what might happen?

Amber Rose Slut Walk

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Amber Rose’s Slut Walk is less than a month away. The walk will take place October 3 in Los Angeles. Celebrities ranging from Nicki Minaj to Nick Cannon have donated money in support. For every supporter of her slut walk, there are a sea of critics. Many believe that she’s not doing it for the right reasons and that she’s seeking attention. However, it’s a good cause. Women are continuously slut-shamed for actions that men get high fives for. Men like Kanye West think that they have the right to make hurtful comments regarding women and their lives. Kanye, did you really have to 30 showers after your relationship with Amber?

People think that they have the right to comment on women’s bodies especially the bodies of Black women. When it comes to women’s bodies, people need to stay in the peanut gallery. Catcalling and slut shaming are unacceptable rites of passage for women. While in college, I realized that my catcalls were vastly different from my non-Black friends. They would get the “Hey cutie please let me marry you” while my Black friends and I would get knock-off Lil Wayne lyrics screamed at us.

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For my friends and I, our catcalls were different because of our bodies were different. People see our bodies and instead of seeing intelligent women, they see brown sacks of flesh that society has taught not to respect. Don’t believe me, download Tinder or Okcupid and see how many guys message you saying, “I’ve never been with a Black girl before.” Since society has taught people not to respect our bodies, Black women have been conditioned to apologize for our bodies and our behavior. We don’t want to be the angry Black women and the Jezebel so we say sorry.

I just checked the news and found out that the era of apologizing is over. It’s 2015 and it’s not cute silencing yourself or forcing yourself to be something that you’re not because society tells you so. Movements like Amber Rose’s Slut Walk help promote the discussion of sexism, slut shaming, catcalling, and other forms of gender inequality that women have faced for centuries.

If I weren’t a broke student living off of ramen, then I would donate money to the Amber Rose Slut Walk because I believe in the cause. What do you think? Is Amber’s slut walk a step in the right direction or is it a ploy for attention?

 

Lessons from Nicki Minaj’s Wax Figure

 

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Nicki Minaj’s hit “Anaconda” keeps reappearing in the news. Earlier, the song started the Twitter war between Nicki and Taylor Swift. Some weeks later, “Anaconda” is back in the spotlight. For Nicki Minaj’s wax figure, Madame Tussauds decided that the suggestive pose of Nicki on her knees was the perfect representation of her career. Nicki’s pose is iconic for “Anaconda”, but did Madame Tussauds really have to make a wax figure out of it?

There’s no denying that Nicki has used her sex appeal during her music career. Nicki has the hits that make you want to pop your booty while proclaiming you’re the new ruler. Nicki’s beautiful but more importantly she’s talented. Unfortunately, her wax figure only concentrates on her sex appeal. Like really Madame Tussauds, the wax figure doesn’t even have a microphone.

To no surprise, the wax figure has been victim to tomfoolery. There are pictures of men mounting wax Nicki and women smacking the wax figure’s butt.  When you look at other famous musicians’ figures, they are standing with microphones or awards. Katy Perry who loves to move her ta- tas gets to have a figure with her standing up, and there aren’t pictures of guests grabbing her assets. Miley Cryus’ wax figure isn’t her riding a wrecking ball. She’s sliding down a giant tongue.

Madame Tussauds says that they are going to set up security around Nicki’s wax figure. However, the damage is done and we’ve been reminded of the important politics regarding Black femininity and sexuality. We’ve learned that a song can be iconic enough to gain a wax figure, but not iconic enough to gain an award nomination. Additionally, we’ve been told that Black women can have their sexuality as long as someone else controls it. The moment that Black women try to use their sexuality for personal empowerment, it gets shut down.

Amy Poehler’s new show includes ‘joke’ about R Kelly urinating on Blue Ivy

 

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Oh Amy Poehler.There was once a time where I thought you were an ally in sisterhood. You have an organization aimed at helping and empowering young girls. Your character Leslie Knope in Parks and Recreation was a dedicated feminist who didn’t take no for an answer. Continue reading “Amy Poehler’s new show includes ‘joke’ about R Kelly urinating on Blue Ivy”

Beyoncé: The September Issue

 

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Beyoncé is on the cover of this year’s September Issue. Her body is poised like a queen rising from her throne. Her dark eyes stare at you and you’re left wondering why after 215 years of publication, there’ve only been three women of color on the September Issue. Sigh, that’s a question for another article. Continue reading “Beyoncé: The September Issue”